YUMA, Ariz. — Friday, the first day of the exhibition season, was a chance for the Padres to show what was new.
Eric Show was going to show off a new changeup. Bip Roberts was going to show why he should be the new second baseman. Gene Walter planned to show why the Padres are counting on him in middle relief. And Terry Kennedy was going to show what a difference being 25 pounds lighter would make.
The Padres lost to the California Angels, 11-1, and Show, Roberts, Walter and Kennedy failed to prove a thing.
--Show's first changeup, his second pitch of the game, was hit for a home run by Reggie Jackson.
"He needs to throw that pitch to be effective," Manager Steve Boros said. "I don't think Jackson hit it too well. He's just so strong that the ball carried."
And carried and carried.
--Roberts was 0-for-4 at the plate and made an error at second. But the bright side was that he made two good catches of line drives.
"While he made some nice plays on line drives, let's face it, that's not the basic play for a second baseman to make," Boros said. "We want to see him go to his right and his left and turn double plays."
--Walter allowed seven earned runs on four hits and three walks in two-thirds of an inning. However, there was a reason for the walks.
"Mark Parent (the catcher) said Gene's fastball was moving so much that he couldn't keep it in the strike zone," Boros said. "We like fastballs to move. We just need him to keep it in the strike zone."
At least Walter didn't allow a home run.
--Kennedy didn't even make it to the ballpark because the catcher hurt his back walking between the locker room and stadium.
"It's nothing serious," Boros said. "Rather than let him play with it, we decided to let him rest it so it didn't get worse."
For a couple of minutes Friday morning, Kurt Bevacqua thought about leaving camp.
Bevacqua, a non-roster player, was told separately by two reporters that General Manager Jack McKeon said the Padres would not keep Bevacqua and were doing him a "favor" by showcasing him this spring for other teams. When the reporters left, Bevacqua went to McKeon.
"If Jack had told me what those guys told me, I probably wouldn't be here right now," Bevacqua said. "If what those guys said was true, I would be like (Ferdinand) Marcos going back to the Philippines."
What does McKeon really think of Bevacqua's chances of making the Padres?
"It would always be possible," McKeon said, "as a last resort."
Because Bevacqua is a free agent, he could not play for the Padres until May 1 under the collective bargaining agreement. He said he petitioned the Players Assn. two or three weeks ago to give him a waiver on the May 1 rule.
"I'm not here trying to make another ballclub, that's for damn sure," Bevacqua said. "If I was trying to make another club, I'd be at their camp. If the door is shut by one organization, then you have to think of moving to another. I don't think that door is shut here, yet."